Linton chiropractor Ed Groenhart has joined a national campaign to make people more aware about the importance of a having a healthy spine. The Alliance of UK Chiropractors (AUKC) says the spine, and nervous system function, is key to overall health, not just the back and neck, because it houses and protects the central nervous system that connects the body to the brain. The organisation brings together the United Chiropractic Association (UCA), McTimoney Chiropractic Association (MCA) and the Scottish Chiropractic Association (SCA).
Ed’s Linton practice is among the practices taking part in the AUKC’s Spinal Awareness Week campaign on 14-20 May. He explained why the spine is so important: “If we look at the spine purely as a structure, it holds us upright, but it also houses the spinal cord, protecting our delicate nerves from interference”.
“Chiropractors find the bits in it that aren’t working as well as they can, and with our hands or specific tools, safely and gently mobilise them, in what we call an adjustment. So, by adjusting the spine, we enable itto function better.
“We hypothesise that if the spine is functioning poorly, then our nervous system will be functioning poorly too, because the spine is the gateway for most of our nervous system. With a poorly functioning nervous system our body simply can’t work as well as it should, and we may get warning signals in the form of health complaints.”
He says we can be lulled into a false sense of security about our health: “We all think we’re fine, if we feel good or we look good. But if you ask anybody who has ever survived a heart attack how they felt the day before, they will say they felt fine. In reality, their heart attack didn’t just come out of the blue. So, it’s not just how you feel, it’s how you function.”
The AUKC has produced a video to explain how a healthy spine is essential for good overall health. Jonathan Clarke, an executive member of the UCA, said: “Our health is dictated by our body’s ability to adapt to external stress.
“The analogy we’re using is that if we see our body as a kitchen sink, we can deal with a certain amount of stress without adverse effect, because we have a natural ability to deal with some stress and we have this big sink that we can fill.
“But the tap continues to pour in external stresses and it will never turn off completely, so we’ll always be facing chemical, emotional and physical stress; thoughts, toxins and traumas. There are things we can do to turn the tap down and therefore limit our exposure to these stresses, but they never go away.
“The other tool in our kit is the plug-hole, the drain. If we keep a nice wide drain, then we’re constantly draining the stress away by appropriately adapting to this stress. The things that control the drain are what we call the ‘Five Pillars of Health’ – nutrition, exercise, rest, attitude and the function of our spine and nervous system. With those five in play, we are better able to adapt to the stresses that we all face throughout our life.”
The message of Spinal Awareness Week 2018 is: ‘It’s not just how you feel, but how you function’. The aim is to encourage people to make lifestyle choices that will enable their body to work well, keep their nervous system functioning at its best, and to cope better with stresses that can often lead to health complaints both physically and mentally.
“Chiropractic isn’t the solution, but, by utilising the Five Pillars of Health, it is part of a solution,” says Ed.
If you’d like more information about how chiropractic care works, contact Ed or Jo at Cambridgeshire Family Chiropractic Centre on 07870568548 or feel free to arrange to pop in for a chat.